Meet Sierra Petro: Founder of Thesickestbitch

Sierra Petro started Thesickestbitch in order to give women a platform to show a different side of fashion. With her website, she showcases women who push the envelope and prove that being thesickestbitch is more than just a pretty face. So we talked to her to learn more about what it's like to have her own brand and what she hopes other women learn from it.

Her Campus South Carolina: What is Thesickestbitch?

Sierra Petro: Thesickestbitch is a platform that showcases fashion on women that represent aspirations besides being really really ridiculously good looking.

HCSC: Why did you decide to start it?

SP: I started thesickestbitch because I don’t think most of the models that are advertised in the fashion industry are presented as more than aesthetically attractive. I use students on my page in order to advertise that women can be beautiful and intelligent. My drive to change the fashion industry in the sense of using different models for editorials stems from my own experience as a model. For as long as I can remember, my role models were the women I saw in magazines for the way they looked. In March of 2016 I was due to finish high school and got signed with an agency in NYC. After the contract was signed, my dream career turned into a nightmare. I started out as a size zero and was still told to get down to an extremely unhealthy size, I faced harassment from photographers, and was treated like an object from my agents and clients. I had finally had enough when my confidence had vanished after NYFW. I decided it was completely not worth it anymore. I got to UofSC in the spring of 2018 not knowing what I was interested in after years of focusing what was purely exterior. I had known I was smart, but now I was determined to apply myself. Being on campus and meeting students and chatting with them about how passionate they were about certain things like public relations and nursing made was really inspiring to me. That’s when my new passion became fashion again, yet this time on my own terms. 

HCSC: What has been the hardest part in creating it?

SP: The hardest part about managing thesickestbitch is increasing my audience. I really would love have more students find the page, especially ones that are in middle or high school and are looking for role models to look up to.  

HCSC: What do you hope women will get from it?

SP: I hope that from reading the sickest bitch, women get inspired by the fashion and start trying things they normally wouldn’t wear. I honestly didn’t truly feel comfortable wearing whatever the fuck I wanted around campus until this semester. I love having people look at me when i’m walking to class and be like, “Ooo where’d you get that?”. A lot of my garments are vintage, so it’s rare to find those pieces elsewhere. However, I do mix those pieces with new ones and I always give the names of where I get everything. I also want to make people think when they are looking at my work. Most of my shoots can be interpreted however the viewer sees them. After thesickestbitch moved from only Instagram to a website as well, I started thinking of my shoots as more of a story rather than an Instagram post. I would say I find most of my inspiration through the clothes themselves. I am very selective with the models I choose and the clothing I place them in. They both need to compliment each other and yet look like nothing else I have seen before. Oh, and each piece has to be something I would wear. 

HCSC: What future goals/plans do you have for Thesickestbitch in the future?

SP: My future plans for the sickestbitch in the future? Well, I would say I am thesickestbitch, so I have a lot planned. I’m going to keep doing what I do on the page with the shoots and articles. I’ve got a new series coming out soon regarding fashion and culture. I already have two UofSC students that will be showcasing their fashion and explaining how fashion is different in there culture, where they get some of their pieces, etc. As for plans in the future ahead of that, I do have many things in the fashion industry I am interested in, but I am pretty spontaneous, so not sure what is next. I do however want to become a fashion editor one day, and one of my biggest inspirations is Franca Sozzani.  

HCSC: How can USC women get involved?

SP: USC women can get involved in thesickestbitch by checking out the Instagram page and website. I always love hearing feedback from my followers and am open to submissions for collaborations and those interested in modeling. 

HCSC: Any advice for other women trying to create their own brand?

SP: The piece of advice I have for women trying to create their own brand is to be original. That is the first thing I like for when i’m looking at a social media page, website, or person in general. Especially in the fashion industry, there is a fine line between being boring or too over the top, but you just need to keep experimenting and don’t stop even if a lot of people don’t acknowledge your work at the beginning. I’m still in the beginning phase of my brand, but i’m going to keep going with it, since I love doing it. 

Make sure you check out Thesickestbitch website, and don't forget to follow Sierra on Instagram and Pinterest too!